Understanding Roth IRA & Roth 401K

The complete understanding of Roth IRA and Roth 401(k) and find out why Roth retirement accounts are better than traditional.

Two of the best ways to save for your retirement are the IRA (individual retirement account) and the 401(k). And now each comes in a traditional and a Roth form. What’s the difference, and which is better? Let’s understand what is Roth IRA and Roth 401k? Also, what is the difference in Roth 401k vs Roth IRA?

There are two types of IRAs and 401k plans – Traditional and Roth. While both types give you the ability to tax-shelter the growth of your earnings, they do it in different ways. What you put into a traditional IRA or 401(k) may be tax deductible on your federal income tax return, while what you put into a Roth IRA or 401(k) comes from your “after tax” dollars. So, when you go to take money out of your traditional IRA or 401(k), the proceeds are subject to income tax because they were not taxed when you made them. By contrast, your withdrawals from a Roth IRA or Roth 401(k) are completely free of income taxes, and that goes for both your contributions and the earnings you made over the years.

To take your Roth account distributions without having to pay income tax, you must have had your money in the account for at least five years, and must meet only one of the following conditions:

  • You must be 59 ½ years old at the time of the withdrawal
  • You must be making the withdrawal because of a disability
  • You must me making the withdrawal in order to pay first-time home buyer expenses (maximum withdrawal is $10,000)
  • The withdrawal must be made by your estate of by your beneficiary in the event of your death.

The fact that you can take money from your Roth IRA or 401(k) without taxes and without penalties makes these options so attractive for retirement saver. And while a traditional IRA or 401(k) requires you to take a minimum amount of money out each year, there’s no such requirement with the Roth plans. You can wait to take out money until you want or need to, and you can even leave the funds untouched and pass them along to your chosen beneficiary at your death.

IRA contribution limit for year 2016 is $5500 or $6500 if you are age 50 or older vs 401(k) contribution limit for year 2016 is $18,000 or $24,000 if you are age 50 or older.

The benefits of Roth IRA and 401(k) plans can also be realized through cash value life insurance like dividend paying whole life insurance policy. In addition to death benefits, good rates of return, and tax-free withdrawals, this kind of whole life insurance plan allows you contribute more than the IRA and 401K limits with the same tax advantages. Want more information? Our experience retirement specialists can provide you detailed information on these different retirement savings options. Please call (877) 972-3262 to speak with a retirement specialist or complete your personalized retirement savings proposal now.